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Sasha Gong and Scott D. Seligman
Approximately 17 million privileged city youth were “sent down” to
the countryside to learn from the peasants during China’s chaotic
Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). Toil in the communes was arduous
and unpleasant and food was seldom abundant, but like the local
farmers, they endeavored to make do with what there was.
learned to prepare remarkably tasty and healthy dishes with the
fresh, wholesome foods in season, to conserve scarce fuel and to
improvise when ingredients were unavailable. They used locally grown
produce because there wasn't anything else. And they mastered the
art of getting peak flavors and maximum nourishment out of
unprocessed, low-calorie foods, devoid of artificial preservatives,
fresh from the fields, ponds and streams.
are their recipes – entirely authentic, and easy to prepare in an
American kitchen. Many are vegetarian. They don’t require exotic
ingredients; you can find everything you'll need in a well-stocked
grocery store. The step-by-step instructions are easy to follow, and
short cuts and substitutions are suggested. There are also many
stories - about Chinese food, about the Cultural Revolution and
about living in the countryside - that bring the recipes, and the
era, to life!